After the Selborne yew came down
the parish plundered the whole thing
like a car sacked for spare parts:
branch and bark became an altar screen
or a silent hanging cross; pilgrims
and druids and day tripping drop-outs
came for whatever small scraps
remained: a well-preserved lance of wood,
seven berries, the stamen’s yellow
and toxic shroud. Consummatum est.
Another scourged Son stripped
of his seamless robe; his woven crown.
For a few more days, it tried growing back
through the hollowed ghost of itself
but those torn-out roots wouldn’t take.
People watched, waited, soon drifted away.
By the churchyard wall, a plaque
marks the day the resurrection failed.
Siegfried Baber was born in Barnstaple, Devon in 1989. Since graduating from Bath Spa University, he lives and works in the city as a freelance writer and photographer. Siegfried’s poetry has featured in a variety of publications including Under…